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Will it cost more to be a member of SCLS? How will MCPL afford it?

FAQ: Will it cost more to be a member of SCLS? How will MCPL afford it?


The annual cost to be a part of South Central Library System (SCLS) would be more than what MCPL pays to be a part of WVLS.

MCPL will not be eliminating staff to make up for the increased cost of joining SCLS. We do have several open positions that remain unfilled due to limited services currently offered by MCPL because of the pandemic, and joining SCLS would give us the opportunity to reorganize our staff and take full advantage of the many services SCLS offers its member libraries, including comprehensive IT support and full cataloging. This reorganization potentially could save MCPL more than $100,000, even after accounting for higher system membership costs.

We also have other options to help defray the cost, such as renting out space on the third floor of MCPL Wausau, and savings through the elimination of user fees paid to SCLS member libraries accessed by Marathon County patrons, like the Marshfield and Portage County public libraries. Our discussions with SCLS also include the possibility of designating MCPL Wausau as a delivery hub for the system, which would generate additional revenue.​

On January 25, 2021, the Library Board voted to approve a motion for the Marathon County Public Library (MCPL) to join the South Central Library System (SCLS). The 4-3 vote was preceded by a year-long analysis by the Library System Task Force, which was formed in January 2020 to thoroughly examine the cost and benefits of joining SCLS. In December 2020, the Task Force’s final recommendation was that MCPL join SCLS ... (read more)